Although spring just arrived, summer will be here before we know it! Your summer days might include beach trips, pool days, and time enjoying the bonus hours of sunshine each day.
However, extra hours at your colorist might not be in the budget or sound quite as fun, or maybe you are looking for a more subtle change. If you’re hoping to lighten your hair for the summer season, try one of these all-natural highlight boosters and hair lighteners to do just that, or to extend the life of your color and add a few highlights without breaking the bank.
Natural Ways to Lighten Your Hair Color
1. Try tea
For lightening all shades of hair, tea can be an incredible ingredient. Chamomile, black, and rooibos can add dimensions to blond, brunette, and red hair colors. The benefits of using naturally derived colors from nature are numerous.
Not only are you skipping harmful chemicals found in commercial hair color and bleach, but the effects will be subtle and safe. The bonus is you don’t have to worry about the damaging effects that bleach can have on the hair.
2. Boost with beer
This volumizing beer hair treatment can also lighten hair if you opt for a lighter shade of beer. It’ll boost shine, which is always a good idea.
The essential oils present in hops are rich in antioxidants [source], the alcohol is cleansing for the hair shaft, and it softens hair as well. The minerals will also benefit your scalp if it tends to get oily. Beer rinses have been around for decades, and now you know why—added body, shine, softness, a cleaner scalp, and lighter hair.
3. Combine lemon and honey
Lemon and honey also round out our hair lightening ingredients. Honey’s glucose oxidase enzyme lightens the hair as it produces hydrogen peroxide [source]. And you won’t trade hair health for a lighter color because honey is also a wonderful conditioning agent.
Lemon lightens hair when the citric acid present in lemon juice heats up in the sun and lifts pigment from the hair shaft. This spray can be used all over the hair or spritzed just on the ends, depending on where you’d like to add natural highlights. It is most effective when paired with time in the sun.
DIY Hair Lightening Spray
The following measurements are for an 8 oz spray bottle, but you can cut in half if using a 4 oz bottle:
- 4 ounces chamomile tea
- Juice of 1 lemon
- 1 teaspoon cinnamon
- 1/4 teaspoon honey
- 1 teaspoon coconut oil
- warm water to fill remainder of bottle
- dark glass bottle*
*A dark glass bottle is ideal as it will help prevent premature oxidation of the spray.
Pour the tea, lemon juice, cinnamon, honey, coconut oil, and water into a glass bottle. Shake well before spritzing on hair. Ideally, you’ll want to spray hair when you plan to spend some time outdoors in the sunshine. The heat and sun will work their magic when combined with these ingredients.
FAQs on Natural Hair Care
I would love to naturally color my hair, but I think I need something that provides more coverage. Any ideas?
Thanks to modern science, there are quite a few products on the market now that are non-toxic, almost 100% plant-based, and they all provide great coverage!
A few to check out: Matrix Biolage has a line of plant-based color, henna-based dyes provide coverage and are gentle enough for even the most damaged hair, Herbatint is vegan and cruelty-free while it touts 100% coverage of gray, and Madison Reed is a popular at-home color kit that is ammonia-, phthalate-, and paraben-free.
Any other things I can do with tea for my hair other than lighten it?
Plenty! Tea is full of antioxidants [source] and provides many benefits for hair. Green tea, in particular, is minimally processed and provides stimulating effects for the scalp. Try this matcha green tea hair mask or rinse.
My struggle is with lackluster hair, and I could really use some help in the shine department.
If you haven’t tried an Apple Cider Vinegar Rinse, I would highly recommend starting there. ACV contains numerous probiotics and nutrients and clarifies the hair, removing any gunk or buildup that dulls hair.
Does taking the vitamin biotin really work for hair?
While not a ton of research has been done on biotin, there has been promising data that it stimulates keratin production [source]. Many who take biotin regularly report an overall improvement in hair quality.
Do you have any tips or tricks for lightening hair naturally? I’m so thrilled that the days of the coppery orange Sun-In are gone, and now we have so many natural and healthy options to subtly lighten the hair.
DIY Hair Lightening Spray
- dark glass bottle
- Pour the tea, lemon juice, cinnamon, honey, coconut oil, and water into a glass bottle. Shake well before spritzing on hair. Ideally, you’ll want to spray your hair when you plan to spend some time outdoors in the sunshine. The heat and sun will work their magic along with these ingredients.
This article was medically reviewed by Dr. Gina Jansheski, a licensed, board-certified physician who has been practicing for more than 20 years. Learn more about Hello Glow’s medical reviewers here. As always, this is not personal medical advice and we recommend that you talk with your doctor.211